Editor’s Note: Of alien berries and South African Proteas

Published Mar 26, 2022


Durban - Whether planted deliberately or occurring naturally, the syringa tree is a common sight in properties of former Indian areas.

Its berry making for free, readily available ammunition for slingshots give it its “slingaberry” nickname.

So common is the tree that a Google search shows no fewer than four streets named for it in KwaZulu-Natal.

I was sent down berry memory lane by this week’s gardening column by horticulturist and landscaper Chris Dalzell, in which I learnt, to my surprise, that the syringa berry is “probably Durban’s most invasive tree” and comes from India.

Due to space constraints, however, you will not find Chris's column in today’s edition, and I must direct you to our website (https://bit.ly/GardeningMarch) or our Facebook page for the link to read it.

Good news is that the Proteas Women have squeaked into the semi-finals of the Women’s World Cup being played in New Zealand.

As I predicted last week, Australia proved to be a stumbling block, easily chasing down the (competitive, I thought) 271 set by the Proteas.

West Indies too were looking to spoil the party, having us at a precarious 61/4 when rain intervened in our favour (for a change), the no-result outcome ensuring passage to the semis.

While we should temper expectations in line with recent results, I am an eternal optimist.

I believed, when few dared to, that we would prevail in the 438 game, and I believe the Proteas Women are berry (sorry!) deserving of the same faith.

The Independent on Saturday